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If you want to pursue a career that is in demand, becoming an auto technician is something to consider. The need for qualified technicians continues to grow. But don't take our word for it. We talked with hiring managers
at leading employers such as dealerships, auto shops and more, about the state of the technician industry.
Adam Silva, service director for BMW of Peabody, has been recruiting Universal Technical Institute (UTI) students for the past 10 years.
“It's very difficult to find experienced technicians,” Silva says. “Our best way is to really recruit them out of technical schools, and UTI is a huge opportunity for us. They have the right attitude, they take whatever job it is and
look at that job as a challenge to fix that car...There are huge, huge opportunities for kids.”
As vehicles get more technical, collision repair becomes more complex. Rod White, locations manager for Cooks Collision, says there's always a large demand for collision techs
since the industry is constantly evolving.
“The collision industry is very important, and it's growing,” White says. “It's been around as long as cars have been on the road. As there's more population and more people driving, there are more accidents and more of a need for vehicles
to be repaired. We grow year-over-year, and there's a constant need for future employees to help us expand with that growth.”
John Norlington, technician recruiter for Sewell BMW of Grapevine, advises new technicians to put careful consideration into their job search.
"When you're about to graduate, you really need to be focused on the type of company you work for," Norlington says. "You want to make sure it's a company that has ethics that match
yours, a professional company and a company that truly cares about its people. Those are the things you need to look for when you're trying to decide what employer you want to work for.”
An industry in high demand means great employers are competing to hire top candidates.
“As far as my relationship with UTI, I am an active member of the program advisory council, I participate in the diesel-based career fairs, and I go a few times during the year to perform presentations and interviews,” says Terry Hartigan,
service manager of CIT Trucks. “That gives me the edge to talk to UTI students first before the competitors get there.”
An in-demand industry means technician professionals can have more opportunities to work in just about any location they want to live. To stay competitive, some auto shops offer on-the-job training to retain top-quality technicians.
“Collision repair is a fantastic [career] option,” says Britton Drown, Service King's communications manager. “Plus, companies like Service King are growing across the country
right now. Service King alone has over 300 locations in 24 states. If you come out of UTI as a qualified technician, and you begin your career with Service King, we have options all over the country, and we continue to grow today.”
When technicians take pride in their work and perform at top levels, that's good for business – both for their employer and for their own career growth potential.
“The number of technicians we hire every year has been 600 for the last 3 years,” says John Perez, senior director of talent acquisition for Sonic Automotive. “The
demand for technicians is not going away. It is constantly rising for us...I don't see any better way for a younger person who's starting their career than to invest their time in learning a trade, especially at UTI and NASCAR Tech.”
The future of the industry is limitless, and that means your career can be, too.
“This industry is going to continue to grow with the technology,” says Wayne Gross, service manager of Lexus of Edison. “We went from carburetors to fuel injection,
and now we have cars that drive themselves. We need people that are going to learn to do that in school who are going to come to help us out.”
See more insights from technician employers here. Click here to learn about UTI, Motorcycle Mechanics Institute, Marine Mechanics Institute and NASCAR Technical Institute.
It only takes a few minutes to learn about technician training opportunities.
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1) UTI is an educational institution and cannot guarantee employment or salary.
2) For important information about the educational debt, earnings and completion rates of students who attended this program, and to review the applicable Gainful Employment disclosure, visit www.uti.edu/disclosures.
6) UTI graduates' achievements may vary. Individual circumstances and wages depend on personal credentials and economic factors. Work experience, industry certifications, the location of the employer and their compensation programs affect wages. UTI is an educational institution and cannot guarantee employment or salary.
7) Some programs may require longer than one year to complete.
10) Financial aid and scholarships are available to those who qualify. Awards vary due to specific conditions, criteria and state.
12) Based on data compiled from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections (2016-2026), www.bls.gov, viewed October 24, 2017. The projected number of annual job openings, by job classification is: Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics, 75,900; Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists, 28,300; Automotive Body and Related Repairers, 17,200. Job openings include openings due to growth and net replacements.
15) Manufacturer-paid advanced training programs are conducted by UTI’s Custom Training Group on behalf of manufacturers who determine acceptance criteria and conditions. These programs are not part of UTI’s accreditation.